Sony to Ship Touch-Screen PC, HDTV Combo

We know at least one mixed-media model Sony will be offering during the upcoming holiday season, although it’s being made available earlier: a touch-screen panel that represents either a large PC monitor, or an HDTV on the smallish side. Actually it’s both.

Sony’s new Vaio L Series multimedia PC comes with a touchscreen to permit navigation on the PC — as well as a sort of finger-sensitive remote control for the HD and DVR. The unit also comes with a few big optional features such as a Blu-ray player (or player/recorder) and an ATSC/NTSC TV tuner. (The user has to add his own indoor or outdoor antenna.) Added optional storage capacity can be up ratcheted up to 1 TB.

Besides the obvious PC side of the model, Sony also plans to market the unit as a 24-inch HDTV set (1080p). HDMI inputs are optional, but all units come with internal WUXGA (Widescreen Ultra extended Graphics Array) for gamers.

Sony said the new touchscreen feature (which a lot of consumers may be starting to expect because of smart-phones and other handheld devices) allows a user to use touch to accomplish most tasks usually performed by a keyboard or mouse. Scrolling, zoom-in, dragging and rotating on-screen objects will all be possible using touch-screen. Sony said its new combo unit will carry a MSRP of about $1,300.